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In Renaissance music, the age-old fascination for the moon found a particular expression. Several pieces from the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries play with the resemblance of the form of the mensuration signs to the phases of the lunar cycle. Most of these compositions are presented as notational riddles. This is especially clear in theoretical treatises such as Hermann Finck’s Practica musica (1556), Scottish Anonymous (ca. 1580) and Pietro Cerone’s El Melopeo y maestro (1613). Furthermore, Jean Lebrung used the inscription ‘Luna te docet’ for a mensuration canon in his motet Saule quid me persequeris. In his collection of Canoni musicali, Lodovico Zacconi even mentions a composition by Biagio Pesciolini whose features were based on a painting of the Virgin Mary with the moon under her feet. Apart from their visual analogy, the mensuration signs and the lunar cycle also share another characteristic on a more abstract level: both are ways of measuring time – musical time on the one hand, cosmic time on the other. Therefore the question should be considered how and to what extent these musical riddles can be related to the scientific developments of their time.